In what may be one of the most creative interpretations of the “living document” that I’ve ever seen, Verizon says that the constitution gives them the right to throttle your web content whenever it wants.
“Net neutrality” means that an internet service provider must allow its users to access all parts of the internet at the same data speed, which is something most of us take for granted. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has been fighting for net neutrality for years now, but many companies — like Verizon — stand firmly in opposition of it.
Verizon wants to be able to prioritize data speeds for its own interests. Which means unless a site has a “special deal” in place with the provider, it may load slowly, if at all for web users using Verizon’s data service.
Here comes Verizon’s latest, and perhaps most absurd legal claim yet… In a legal brief Verizon filed on Monday, the company claims that enforcing net neutrality violates the free speech rights of its owners! They compare their role in throttling certain web content to that of a newspaper editor selecting which stories to run.
Of course the newspaper editor isn’t getting a payoff from the writers of the stories when deciding what to run.
Verizon neglects to mention the huge chunk of money it could bring in by charging sites for allowing its users to view them on their computers and devices.
I’ve heard some creative and even wild-ass reasons from those against net neutrality in my time, but this has to be the most ridiculous claim I’ve ever heard. It’s Verizon’s constitutional right to prevent you from viewing what you want to on the Internet? Hogwash!